Cascade Lake to operate on reduced hours due to mining |

Cascade Lake to operate on reduced hours due to mining

Samantha Boring
Updated: June 02, 2021 11:46 AM
Created: June 02, 2021 11:43 AM

(ABC 6 NEWS) - As the weather gets warmer more swimming options are opening in Rochester. Cascade Lake was the only place to cool off in town last summer. This year it's back open, but there are some changes. 

The lake was open all summer long last year, but this year it is only open Friday afternoons through Sundays due to mining on the lake. 

"It's actually a dredging operation they suck the sand and the sediment off the bottom of the lake that is put in that big pile over there and the water drains out and it is good, clean sand that they can use for construction whether it is fill material or concrete," said Rochester Parks and Forestry Division, Michael Nigbur. 

There has been mining on the lake since the 1970s. When mining is happening, it is a safety concern for swimmers. The mining has not been exactly easy for the neighbors. 

"We saw that they were actually taking dirt out, didn't know what it was we just knew that it was really loud all throughout the day," said Rochester resident, Morgan Williams. 

The project was supposed to continue through 2023, but the mining company now says the work should be done this year. 

"Well if it is done this year that would be awesome," said Williams. 

Cascade lake was closed a few times last summer because of high bacteria levels. Officials from Rochester Parks and Rec said they are testing the water every week to make sure it is safe to swim in for the summer. 

"It's a safe beach to swim on and there are a lot of bodies of water around the state that they don't even test, so we have no idea what the numbers are there. And really the only concern comes if you are swallowing a lot of water," said Rochester Parks and Rec Recreation Supervisor, Ben Boldt. 

City officials said so far they are seeing low levels of bacteria, but that can always change due to things like rain, heat, and wildlife. 

While the mining process continues, the beach will still be open, as will Foster Arends Beach. Silver Lake Pool and Soldier's Field Pool will be open with free admission. 

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